GREENSBORO — Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, there are several ways to celebrate the holiday season in safe and family-friendly ways. Here are a few.
Seventeen giant Macy's-style balloons will line Church Street downtown for a Balloon Regatta on Saturday and Sunday. Although downtown won't host its traditional holiday parade, the traditional holiday-style giant balloons will join the regatta.
Drivers should decorate their cars and join the regatta anytime from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, from the Greensboro Children's Museum to the Depot.
Look for characters from Community Theatre of Greensboro's "The Wizard of Oz," Triad Stage's "A Christmas Carol," Greensboro Ballet's "The Nutcracker," Disney princesses, strolling carolers — and a 30-foot Santa at the end.
The Balloon Regatta is part of the Downtown in December activities planned by Downtown Greensboro Inc. Visit downtownindecember.org for the complete list and more details.
Be aware that some streets near the regatta will be closed.
Will Ferrell stars as Buddy the Elf in the movie "Elf." Watch the comedy drive-in style at 6 p.m. Friday in the Greensboro Coliseum parking lot.
High Point Pediatric Dentistry will present the movie with radio station WKZL (107.5 FM).
'The Polar Express' and virtual Ask Santa
The Carolina Theatre will host virtual conversations with Santa Claus before the movies "The Polar Express" on Sunday and "The Muppet Christmas Carol" on Dec. 20 in its theater at 310 S. Greene St.
Audience members can ask questions of Santa, who will appear on the big screen straight from his workshop at the North Pole.
Santa comes courtesy of the support of StoryFile, the artificial intelligence startup whose proprietary Conversa technology platform has given birth to the world’s first “AI Santa” just in time for the holidays. This marks its public debut.
Conversations with Santa will begin around 2:30 p.m., with the movie starting at 3 p.m. Don't forget to wear a mask.
Tickets for the Santa conversation and movie are $8. Seating is limited to 100 guests.
Online ticket sales at carolinatheatre.com cut off two hours before showtime.
If not sold out, seats may be available to buy at the door 30 minutes before showtime.
As part of its Hanukkah celebration, Temple Emanuel at 1129 Jefferson Road will present "Cirque De Emanuel: A Night of Light & Connection" on Sunday.
Visitors will remain in their cars for the shows at 5:30 and 7 p.m., which will feature menorah lighting, music and fire performers.
Admission is free but space is limited. Register at tegreensboro.org.
Park cars in the spaces around the circle in the Temple parking lot. The show will be held around the fountain.
Hanukkah, which started Thursday, runs through Dec. 18.
Zion Wonderland at Mount Zion Baptist Church will feature the Greensboro Symphony Wonderland Brass and Drums, The Suah African Dance Ensemble and The Mount Zion Arts and Drama Ministry's Live Nativity Scene.
The free, drive-thru, family-friendly event will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the church, 1301 Alamance Church Road.
Find details at https://www.mtzbc.com.
'Two Winter Tales'
Celebrate the season by joining Creative Greensboro for a virtual children’s production, “Two Winter Tales,” consisting of two short plays about winter.
The show will be livestreamed at 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $8 at www.creativegreensboro.com. Call 336-335-6426 for more information.
The production features 17 local actors ages 7 to 12.
The show runs about 25 minutes. Both plays are appropriate for all ages.
Choreographic Voices: Black Men Creating Dance with Purpose
Duane Cyrus, who teaches dance at UNCG and directs the Theatre of Movement performing and visual art collective, will be among those presenting work virtually in "Choreographic Voices: Black Men Creating Dance with Purpose."
The livestreamed presentation begins at 7 p.m. Friday. Registration is $8 plus service fees at theatreofmovement.org.
The link to the presentation will be live for 24 hours after the event.
Contact Dawn DeCwikiel-Kane at 336-373-5204 and follow @dawndkaneNR on Twitter.